Project Based Learning in Action

Learning happens naturally for young children in many ways.  One of the ways our teachers capitalize on student interest is through the process of project based learning.  When we talk about this style of learning, children actively collaborate with their teachers in dedicated spaces to build physical structures that will allow them to experience concepts in a tangible way.  In our classrooms, these experiences often come to life in the form of intentional play.

A recent article from EdSurge talks about the challenges of project based learning in schools and offers advice on how to incorporate these meaningful learning experiences into the daily lives of students and teachers.  For us, the process goes something like this:  Once an idea for a project is agreed upon, which requires a little bit of discussion and compromise, teachers are charged with embedding content and scaffolding concepts in accessible ways.  At Bennett Day School, we believe in nurturing a collaborative culture amongst our students as well as our faculty.  Through collaboration, our teachers work together to flesh out ideas that incorporate developmentally appropriate skills and concepts, then work with students to create content with classroom materials.  In the pictures below, you will see a snapshot of this process in action as students created a “yard sale” as a way to experience the concept of money and better understand it’s real world applications.

A collection of items are displayed “For Sale” as part of the SK Yard Sale.  As part of a math activity,
the items were valued and priced by students according to their coin value.